Taking place in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, from 21-22 June, Better Cotton says its annual conference will discuss all four issues identified for their impact on the sustainability of the cotton sector.
The conference will take place at the Felix Meritis and is expected to bring together more than 300 industry stakeholders – both in-person and online – representing all stages of the supply chain.
Keynote speakers include Nisha Onta, executive director at sustainable development initiative Governance Lab, who will kickstart the climate action theme; Antonie Fountain, CEO of cocoa sector watchdog the Voice Network, who will discuss smallholder livelihoods; Maxine Bédat, founder and director of ‘think-and-do tank’ the New Standard Institute (NSI), who will discuss traceability and data; and Felipe Villela, co-founder of sustainable farming foundation reNature, who will present on regenerative agriculture.
Better Cotton Farmers will feature throughout the course of the event, as the organisation strives to raise awareness of the implications of each theme on cotton producing communities around the world. Farmers and field facilitators from India, Pakistan, Australia, Brazil and Mozambique will be in attendance, offering unique insights into their operations.
In the climate action theme, a practical workshop will be held to explore the potential of carbon finance in cotton production and agriculture more broadly. The session will explore the benefits and potential challenges of insetting and what the introduction of such mechanisms would mean for farmers.
With Better Cotton set to launch its own traceability system later this year, the conference’s focus on the topic presents the opportunity for a timely update. Better Cotton’s senior traceability manager, Jacky Broomhead, will sit down with Erin Klett, senior director of research & policy at Verité, to discuss how brand, retail and supplier members can prime their operations for increased supply chain visibility. Solution providers including TextileGenesis will then join the panel to discuss Better Cotton’s ongoing pilot project in India.
The conference’s fourth and final theme, regenerative agriculture, will explore the topic – from its very definition to ambitions of mainstreaming such practices. In an interactive panel discussion, smallholders and large farm owners from around the world – including Almas Parveen from Pakistan and Todd Straley from the United States – will discuss ‘regenerative principles’ put forward by the audience to gauge their real-world applicability.
Participants to the event include: The Sustainable Trade Initiative (IDH), Cotton Australia, Organic Cotton Accelerator, US Cotton Trust Protocol, Retraced, Marks & Spencer, John Lewis, J.Crew Group, and Textile Exchange.
Registration for the event is available at bettercottonconference.org.